ST MARY’S Guildhall will be opening its doors on Friday following a major refurbishment and restoration.
The Guildhall will be managed by No Ordinary Hospitality and will provide guests with an immersive experience featuring hands-on activities and the chance to see the newly uncovered Medieval Kitchen, which is extremely well preserved and fully accessible for the first time in a century.
Following a massive refurbishment and restoration programme, St Mary’s Guildhall will offer visitors a new immersive experience with cutting edge interpretation, hands on activities, as well as the opportunity to explore the newly uncovered Medieval Kitchen – one of the best preserved in the country – which is fully accessible for the first time in almost 100 years.
Restoration work was also completed on the stunning St Mary’s Guildhall tapestry – dating back to the turn of the 16th Century.
New interpretation programmes, including a digital tour and interactive activities have been developed to explain the story of the tapestry and enable visitors to clearly see and understand more about the beautiful artwork.
In 2017 Coventry City Council embarked on a process to reimagine the venue, helping make the transformation happen by enabling and securing more than £6m of funding with the support of major national funders to create what will be a major visitor attraction for Coventry.
The transformation was made possible by a £1.4m grant from The National Lottery Heritage Fund, thanks to National Lottery players. and through the Cultural Capital Investment Fund resourced by Coventry City Council, Arts Council England, and the Government’s Getting Building Fund through Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership – amounting to a further £4.9m.
The Guildhall dates back to 1352 and survived the 1940 blitz that hit the city centre.
Cabinet member for jobs, regeneration and climate change, Coun Jim O’Boyle: “Coventry’s Guildhall, one of the finest in the country, was a hidden gem but one with massive potential.
“The redevelopment of the Guildhall means its legacy will live on for local people and visitors to enjoy for many years to come.
“It is a perfect example of what can be achieved when we combine the best of the old with the best of the new.”